Belgium to change "born in the Soviet Union" on all official documents for Lithuanians born before 1991

  • 2015-09-23

Belgian-issued documents issued to Lithuanian, Latvian and Estonian citizens born during the Soviet Union’s occupation of the Baltic States will no longer feature the words: "born in the Soviet Union"

The decision was confirmed Lithuania's Ministry of Foreign Affairs on September 23, 2015. 

An agreement was reached between the Lithuanian Embassy in Belgium, the Belgian Foreign Ministry and its National Register.

The three bodies reviewed information regarding Lithuanian citizens residing in Belgium, and took the decision to change their place of birth from "the Soviet Union" to "Lithuania" on official documents. 

Although Belgium never recognised the USSR’s occupation of the Baltic States Belgian law dictates the National Register has to record the name of the country that existed during the time of birth. 

Up until now, a temporary decision has been in place regarding Lithuanian citizens born before 1991. 

Only a city or place where they were born, instead of the country (the Soviet Union), were identified in documents issued by Belgium.